Monday, December 31, 2012

In the nick of time

Yes, again life got in the way of blogging. Life hasn't been easy, 2012 definitely wasn't our year... So now we have our hopes on 2013! :) I'm ending this year on a positive note though: in those difficult times we got to know who our real friends are. We are very blessed with wonderful friends and some family that support and help us wherever they can. So I won't lament over lost friends or disappointing people, we are very thankful for those real friends. In return we try our best to be good friends too!

Let's see what I can tell you about the past two months. Again focusing on the positive things!

Early November I attended another workshop with Vivianne and Chris Crowley. In March I was at their workshop "Change, Growth and Renewal" and loved it. This time the theme was "A Samhain Journey", focusing on the Dark Goddess and the Lord of Death and Rebirth, working with meditation, story-telling and ritual to connect with our ancestors of spirit, blood and land and to learn to harness the creative energies of our deeper, hidden selves. It was very interesting and gave me a lot to think about and work with. Vivianne and Chris are wonderful people, down to earth and with a lot of knowledge they are happy to share. Chris also has a gift for guided meditations; his voice takes you away within seconds!

On November 9th I went to the "Zorgfestival" in Amsterdam, a festival for people who work (or want to work) in the health sector. Together with other 'experience-workers', we ran a workshop / lecture about our experience with mental health issues.  I was first to tell my story about eating disorders and depression, answer questions, etc. The audience were teenagers, students that are going to work in the health sector. The others told their story, read poems they have written and did an interactive part. It was a success and we got lots of compliments.

In November and December Ron and I went to the full moon celebrations. This year we attended most of them. With a varied group of people we do a ritual outside in the dunes near Haarlem. Meditations, stories, sharing, ritual work and more. I love it! Ron is the 'fireman', he makes and looks after the fire in the middle. Afterwards we gather around the fire with food, drink, drums, chats etc. In November I made a video that gives an impression of the 'after-party':
Last Friday we celebrated the last full moon of this year, the 13th gathering. It was the largest group of people, 15 men and women. The organizing couple announced we will continue the celebrations in 2013. Yay!

On the morning of Yule (Winter Solstice, longest night of the year, Midwinter) at sunrise we were at the same spot to celebrate the returning of the light. This time only with 3 people, but that was okay too. We did a simple but beautiful ritual. Afterwards we burned the Yule log, enjoyed hot chocolate and ate 'snert' (Dutch pea soup). A wonderful day with friends!

Last Sunday we were volunteers at the "Langste Rollade Ter Wereld", a world record attempt to make the longest rolled rost in the world, surrounded by a Dickens-style market with old trades (smithy, beekeeper, leather work and more) and a living nativity scene. The attempt was successful and the new record is 155 meters and 25 centimeters (509.35 feet)! Here's a video of the result:
It was made by a group of traditional butchers with free-range and organic meat. Afterwards the rolled rost was cut into pieces and donated to food aid for people that can't afford much. All the proceeds of the event went to another good cause.

This morning at sunrise we walked a labyrinth on the beach between Bloemendaal and Zandvoort. It was the fourth time that friends of us made a labyrinth there on December 31st, and our third time to walk it. It was very windy, but a wonderful experience, shared with friends. I made a lot of pics and some video's. I shared them publicly on Facebook in the album "Labyrint 31-12-2012". Just click the link to see the pics.

Well, that's it for now. See you next year! :-))